Wind Catcher

Wind Catcher

by Jeff Altabef, Erynn Altabef


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2015 Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal Winner

Lies. Betrayal. Destiny. A choice that changes everything.

My name is Juliet Wildfire Stone, and I am special. I see visions and hear voices, and I have no idea what they mean.

When someone murders medicine men in my sleepy Arizona town, I can’t help but worry my crazy grandfather is involved. He’s a medicine man and more than a just a little eccentric. He likes to tell me stories about the Great Wind Spirit and Coyote, but none of it makes any sense. I thought I knew the truth, but in order to clear his name I dive into his alien world and uncover an ancient secret society formed over two hundred years ago to keep me safe—me! And I can’t help but to start to wonder whether there’s some truth to those old stories my grandfather has been telling me.

I just want to be an average sixteen-year-old girl, but apparently I’ve never been average. Could never be average. I didn’t know it before, but I’m a Chosen, and those voices I’ve been hearing... well, they’re not just “voices.” I’ve started to develop abilities, but they might not be enough. A powerful entity called a Seeker is hunting me and he’s close—really close.

I thought I knew the answers but truth is, I don’t. Betrayed by those I love, I must choose to run or risk everything in order to fulfill my destiny. I hope I make the right choice. Don’t you?

[Teen & Young Adult, Mystery and Thriller, Fantasy and Supernatural, American Indian Culture]

Includes a special sneak preview (the first chapter) of the second book in the series, Brink of Dawn.

WINNER: Readers' Favorite Awards -- Gold Medal 2015: Young Adult Coming-of-Age

WINNER: Mom's Choice Awards -- Silver Medal: Young Adult Books

WINNER: Beverly Hills Books Awards - 2015: Best Young Adult Fiction

WINNER: Awesome Indies -- Seal of Approval: “A treat to read.”

WIND CATCHER by Jeff Altabef and Erynn Altabef

Evolved Publishing presents the first book in the Chosen series of young adult mystery thrillers with an American Indian fantasy and supernatural theme, from the same author who brought you the award-winning thriller Shatter Point, and his daughter. [DRM-Free]

Wind Catcher is one of the best thrillers for YA that I have read in some time.... If I hadn't had to eat and sleep, I would have read it right through without stopping. It is just that good!” ~ Bookends

Books by Jeff Altabef:

  • Fracture Point
  • Shatter Point
  • RED DEATH - Book 1: Red Death
  • RED DEATH - Book 2: The Ghost King
  • CHOSEN - Book 1: Wind Catcher
  • CHOSEN - Book 2: Brink of Dawn
  • CHOSEN - Book 3: Scorched Souls

More Great YA Books from Evolved Publishing:

  • Dream Warriors by D. Robert Pease
  • The Silver Sphere by Michael Dadich
  • Darla Decker Diaries by Jessica McHugh
  • Two Moons of Sera by P.K. Tyler

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781622533145
Publisher: Evolved Publishing
Publication date: 03/21/2015
Pages: 324
Product dimensions: 6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.68(d)

About the Author

AUTHOR: Jeff Altabef lives in New York with his wife, two daughters, and Charlie the dog. He spends time volunteering at the Writing Center in the local community college. After years of being accused of "telling stories," he thought he would make it official. He writes in both the thriller and young adult genres. As an avid Knicks fan, he is prone to long periods of melancholy during hoops season. Jeff has a column on The Examiner focused on writing and a blog on The Patch designed to encourage writing for those that like telling stories.

CO-AUTHOR: Erynn Altabef is an avid reader, dancer, and community activist. When she's not in High School, she loves Starbucks, performing in school musicals, baking, and watching movies with her friends.

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Wind Catcher 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
Neesie315 More than 1 year ago
"Truth is a tricky thing. Some people believe in absolute truths that are always correct. That's foolish. Truth depends upon your perspective." Juliet is a pretty typical 16 year old girl, caught between the two worlds of her heritage. Her heart and her grandfather are in the Native world, while her mother insists on sending her to Bartens, an exclusive private school, so she can get ahead in the world. Unfortunately, Juliet doesn't really fit in at Bartens. When a local Medicine Man is murdered and Juliet's grandfather, Sicheii, is suspected, she has to decide what to do. Add in the fact that Jake insists that she is "Chosen" (which she really doesn't understand) and that her formerly absent father shows up on the scene and you get an idea of the turmoil this young woman is going through. I have read many books involving Native American mythology and enjoy learning about the different myths. This book did not disappoint in this aspect. The writing was good, the characters pretty well developed and it definitely kept my attention. I would have liked to know more about the mythology and the "secret" society mentioned in the book. My main complaint would be this: Juliet is pretty much a whiny, complaining (typical) teenaged girl, then she suddenly becomes a kickass fighter taking on the powerful Seeker. I think that in real life, it would take more than what was indicated in the book to make this full turn-around. But, as Juliet says toward the end of the book, "I understand what true strength is now-strength to do what you think is right, to stand up for those who you love." All in all, this is an enjoyable start to a series that I will probably continue reading.
JBronder More than 1 year ago
Juliet Wildfire Stone is a sixteen year old girl that is half Navajo and half white. Because of this blend Juliet has a hard time in school. Home is no better. Her grandfather, Sicheii tells her stories from the Native American culture. But her mother is trying to step away from that world causing Juliet to be divided at home. But on her sixteenth birthday Juliet starts hearing voices and seeing visions. People are being killed and it looks like her grandfather may be connected to the deaths. But when she speaks with Sicheii she learns that he is part of a secret society that has been around to protect her, the Chosen. And if her people are to survive she has to accept her role in their culture. This is a coming of age story of a young girl that learns that she is more than just ordinary. Besides her daily struggle of being between two cultures she learns that she has been told lies that are meant to protect her and get her prepared for her role as the Chosen. Of course when she learns the truth she get angry and spiteful. But she is going to have to come to terms with everything and make a very important decision. I understand that Juliet is having a hard time trying to figure out where she fits into this world. But she is a whiny brat. She is wishy washy and impulsive but to the wrong direction almost every time. But she is young and has a big decision to make. Over all I liked this story. I am curious to see where it goes in book two. I received Wind Catcher from Ari at Candid Book Reviews for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.
Dianne Miller More than 1 year ago
This book was one of the best ones I have ever read! Most of the time reading the story it was a constant battle of do I really need to sleep or can I read more of the story? Naturally the story won. This is a story that once you start reading, you honestly can't put it down. The characters are so well written that you feel as if you really know them, and the plot never gets boring. You learn to care for the characters the farther along in the book you get, and you even feel for the characters when something goes wrong, or something sad happens. There are a few parts in the story that will make you sad, but it's not one that is only ever sad. You will be taken on a true adventure, help solve a lot of questions, and get to feel like your there while the main character goes on the journey that she must now face. This is a must read, and isn't just a great story for teens, but adults as well.
MontzieW More than 1 year ago
Wind Catcher (Chosen #1) by Jeff Altabef is a great teen/young adult book but I enjoyed it too and I am certainly not young! It is a fantasy about certain Chosen kids that have certain abilities and they don't know about it. This is about one girl. It is fast, fun, and suspense-filled. There is plenty of fantasy to go around also! It is a fun and exciting read full of intrigue as to who-done-it and why, and who it after the girl of the story and why. Lots of action and friendship, magic, and good vs evil. I had to read the next book as soon as I finished this book, I could not wait! It is that good! It didn't win the 2015 Gold Medal Winner for nothing! Awesome book, can't say enough about it esp. for a teen book, usually they are not as well plotted or dialogue drags, or characters not as developed but not in this book, excellent. Try it, great book.
BuckeyeAngel More than 1 year ago
Juliet is 16 and half Indian, She hears voices and sees visions but she doesn’t understand them. She doesn’t know she is the Chosen. A series of lies has blocked the truth from her. I loved the characters especially Juliet and all she went through to lead her to a decision. The overall story and plot were great. I recommend. **I received an ARC of this story for an honest review
shivapastures More than 1 year ago
Wind Catcher (Chosen, #1) I received a free copy from the authors, in exchange for an honest review. Juliet has always had a special side to her, which her grandfather tells her it's for a reason. Hearing stories her whole life about the Great Wind Spirit & Coyote, she doesn't take it too serious. After all, legends are just that - stories to learn a lesson from. But these stories are so much more and involve her in a riddle. Being Native American, she must always straddle that line, between who she really is and what everyone else wants her to be. When the murders begin and secrets are learned, she starts to realize that the legends her grandfather has been retelling her do have components of truth to them. Is she really the one that is referred to as the Chosen one? Is she the one to stop them all? Sometimes uncovering the truth just leads to more questions. 'He shakes his head. "The Great Wind Spirit chose you. You are Chosen. No one else has these gifts." He passes me a glass of water. "As our leader, Roundtree knew more. He had the Ancient Book of Gifts, but he refused to give it me. All I can do is help you with the old ways: through the stones, the prayers, and the ancient medicines." "How come you didn't tell me about this earlier?" I practically growl at him. "Why does everything have to be a secret?" I feel heavy and tired like a pack animal that has carried supplies for too long. "I am only an agent of the Wind Spirit." His face softens and his shoulders go limp. "This is how it's written. Besides, you would be in danger if others knew about your special nature before you accepted your gifts." I will have to say that hands down this was a great collaborative book! Reading the brief description from the author, I thought that would be a great book to read with my daughter. It took longer that I would have thought to read through it, but only because my daughter became so interested in Native American folklore, that we started reading other stories. It's very well written, interesting and lots of good twists. Both of us are really looking forward to the next installment!
hpgirl2008 More than 1 year ago
This book is a great mixture of a coming-of-age novel with a lot of Native American mythology. Juliet wants to be a regular teenager but she isn't. She can't be because she is a Chosen One and she isn't normal. I loved the relationship between her and her grandfather Sicheii in the book - the teenage angst and resentment that runs beneath the love for your family. Sicheii starts off as a little bit of an unlikable character because we see him through the eyes of Juliet first. But he becomes this complex father figure that she realizes that she wants and needs in her life. Coming to terms with what she is and needs to be is a huge theme in this book, and I think the authors did an excellent job creating Juliet as a deep emotional character. The doubts that run through her mind when she believes that Sicheii might have committed crimes are very normal for her age. She doesn't know where she belongs, all she has to go on are the seemingly crazy stories she has been told and what she learns along the way. By the end of the book Juliet seems to have really come a long way to finding out who she is and what she is capable of. A great middle grade read, does have some violent themes so I would say 13 and over. Check it out :) I received a complimentary ebook in exchange for my honest review.
TKSayers More than 1 year ago
You know how sometimes you're reading a book and realize you're approaching the end, and you're sad because you're not ready for the story to be over yet? That's how I felt about Wind Catcher. Happily, this is a fantasy adventure series (the Chosen series), so the story isn't *really* over, just delayed until the next book comes out. This book (series) is the story of Juliet Wildfire Stone, and Wind Catcher starts out with all the elements of a typical YA coming-of-age story. Juliet is half white and half Native American, and as such she feels caught between two worlds. On one side she has her rich Native American heritage, encouraged by her maternal grandfather, a medicine man. On the other side, she lives in a gated community and attends a rich preppy school where she's taunted as being "Indian trash." A member of both groups but feeling like she fits into neither, Juliet struggles to find her sense of self. That setup alone would make for an interesting read, but there are complications in Juliet's life that make her teen angst even more challenging. Like the voices she hears, a series of murders, an ancient secret society, and the betrayals of all the people she loves and trusts most. You see, it turns out Juliet is the Chosen. Without giving too much away, Juliet has some special abilities that set her apart even further (and she's REALLY not happy about it). Will she accept her role as the Chosen and embrace her special powers, or will she shun her Native American heritage in an attempt to fit in with the "rich kids"? Is there anyone in her life whom she can truly trust? And how are the recent murders, the secret society, and the recurring symbol of the twisted arrows connected – and connected to Juliet? This is a page-turner that will have you simultaneously flipping the pages as fast as you can read while also wanting to delay the inevitable (but temporary!) end to Juliet's adventures. I received an ecopy of this book in exchange for my honest review; all opinions are my own.
Aisazia More than 1 year ago
I looked forward to reading this book but when I started it read a little slower than I personally would like, but it builds up more as you read it. Don't expect a lot of action until you're at least half way through the book.  Juliet's voice is captured well. Although, not too witty or overly dramatic, I think the authors captures the realistic teen voice in the writing. I liked Juliet, I liked that she got into fights and learned from her mistakes. She is a bit more passive than I expected but it could be because of the writing because it made the protagonist seem more passive than she really was in the story. If the prose had been written more actively, I think it would have made her character a lot more interesting and easier to read.  I feel that the writing could have used a little more editing. It would have made reading the story much more entertaining and clearer if that had been done. I think it held me back from completely immersing myself  in the story because occasionally I felt there was a lot 'telling' instead of  'showing'.  The story has an interesting concept and I loved the diversity. I don't read many Native American culture or stories and I like the spin that the authors take with the story. It's something I'd like to see more of in books. I also like how an absent parent/guardian isn't always the case in this story nor do they disappear. Her mother calls to check up on her, as does her grandfather. I'm glad that this story did not fall in to one of those tropes because it has been one of my pet peeves.  Overall, it's the beginning of an interesting and creative story. Although the build up is slow, it may be worth it to push through to the end if you enjoy surprises and are looking for a realistic story with paranormal undertones. Don't expect too much fantasy aspects in this installment. If you're looking for a story where trust and a connection with nature are the themes then you won't go wrong with this read. 3 out of 5 rating for me! (A copy was provided for an honest review. I was not compensated in any other way.)
gaele More than 1 year ago
I’m not a huge ‘thriller’ reader, but the buzz and the synopsis of this book were simply too clever to pass up.   The writing partnership of Jeff and Erynn Altabef is a father/daughter duo, and I love the idea of two brains coming together to create cohesion.  In this story, the protagonist is 16 year old Juliet, and she is also our insight into the story, as the narration is in her voice.  The use of first person is honest and enhances the flow of the story: we feel that a teen girl is relating the story and events, and we are privy to her thoughts and memories. I like fist person for that very reason, especially when done well: the tension and angst from the character is transmitted to the reader often before  the “EEK” moment.   Juliet is the daughter of a Navajo man and a Caucasian woman: a bit of her own personal struggles with  identity being so decidedly different from those around her only add to that sense of ‘who am I’ that everyone goes through in their teens.  What is different here is the decided connection to both sides of her cultural  identity: her best friends who couldn’t be more different, and the glimpses into the influences and legends of  the Navajo.   Language and emotion in this story feels very honest: decisions that Juliet must make are not always based s olely in logic, but often are a mix of what she knows and what she feels – giving each reader a stake in her decisions, since we all have different thoughts and experiences coming in. While some of the more outrageous appearances of her powers seem to be rather offhandedly accepted, it also seems to tie deeply back to the  relationship with her Sicheii (grandfather) and his tales and teachings she has heard since she can remember.   I enjoyed the interplay between Juliet and her classmates, friends and best friends: those all felt real and  possible, a glimpse into her day and life.  And then, the mystery and action start to take over, and things move on a breakneck speed with mystery to solve and Juliet’s every experience comes into play as she makes decisions. She doesn’t want to be the “ Chosen”, and she is conflicted about everything: change and growth are scary and unsettling, and the perfect time for doubts to creep in. The authors used that simple fact of human nature to enhance Juliet: she’s just 16, she shouldn’t have all the answers or always be certain that the decisions she makes are always right, and the  moments of insecurity that she shows in second-guessing what she reveals, what path she is on, all help to make her more relatable. I loved that she was determined to see things through, even as she felt compelled to  make the best choices possible, not just the quickest ones.  While there are some elements and interior monologue that is repetitive, and some of her decisions appear to  come more quickly without real solid reasoning, I enjoyed those moments as it made her more human, more  16.  Integration of some Native American elements, the spats at school and with friends, and the reluctant heroine stepping up to do what is necessary to fulfill her purpose made this a story that I believe will appeal to teens and YA readers alike. I know that my daughter would have stayed up too late on a school night reading  this story – needing to know what comes next.   I received an eBook copy of the title from the author for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for  this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility. 
JulieGB More than 1 year ago
Juliet’s grandfather Sicheii, being a medicine man, has always told her that she was special, she just didn’t believe it. Being as ordinary as could be, she saw nothing remarkable about herself. Once she turned 16, though, things changed. She started having weird, vivid dreams. The voices in her head became louder. Now, the people in Sicheii’s secret society are being murdered and he becomes a prime suspect. When Juliet and her friends begin to investigate, she uncovers shocking secrets that her entire family have kept from her. She finally comes to the realization that she must embrace this new special self if she wants to survive her future. This story had me looking for conspiracy theories everywhere. I tried to outguess the secrets, but then a twist would come and rule out my conclusions. So I was guessing to the end. I liked the Native American aspect of this story. It had a good plot with well-rounded and likeable characters. And the last sentence will throw you for a loop.
D_Donovan More than 1 year ago
The theme sounds simple: sixteen-year-old half-Indian Juliet just wants to be a normal teenage - but she can't, because she is the Chosen, with all the powers and responsibilities that come with the position. Her abilities to hear voices and see visions have always troubled her and her grandfather Sicheii's words have been puzzling and unhelpful. All this is about to change in Wind Catcher, the first book of the 'Chosen' series that takes Juliet's troubled world and ramps it up to a whole new level when she discovers a series of lies has shrouded her true purpose in the world. On the face of it, the plot sounds familiar: teen angst, epic quest, self-discovery, supernatural forces, even Native American influences. But as with any story, it's all about how it's handled and, especially in the case of teen stories, it's all about building characterization and creating a compelling adventure: both keys to attracting and retaining young adult readers. And Juliet's dilemma holds these facets in droves. First of all, her family is loving yet not united in its perception of the non-Indian world and its powers. Neither is it united in its interactions: her mother and grandfather have a prickly relationship and Juliet is often caught in the middle, captivated by his stories and reality which are often negated by her mother's responses. As she becomes involved in her school's story of her kidnapping, designed to alter unusual facts about her experience, and comes to believe Sicheii has involved her in something dangerous and deadly, she's ever on a quest to find the truth at the heart of these deceptions and half-stories - and that's the pulse of Wind Catcher, which revolves around this journey and its constantly-changing paths. Many young adult books revolve around young adult decision-making processes, but the joy and excitement fueling Wind Catcher is that Juliet's search for truth doesn't end with its emergence, but with the bigger picture of what she'll choose to do with it. That's the heartbeat of a powerful saga that fully immerses readers in all the possible scenarios that can stem from one's choices in life - and the reason why Wind Catcher stands out from the crowd. It's the heartbeat of a powerful young adult adventure steeped in Native American legend and tradition, fueled by a feisty female protagonist who refuses to take the easy way out whether it comes to belief, truth, or love, and who faces down kidnapping, betrayal, and an ultimate choice. Add in a growing circle of supportive friendships and you have a story that is vivid, engrossing - and (so you'll be forewarned) ends in a cliffhanger, ready for Book Two.
ReadersFavorite2 More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Savannah Edelen (Teen Reviewer) for Readers' Favorite Wind Catcher: A Chosen Novel by Jeff Altabef and Erynn Altabef is a wonderful novel about a young mixed Native American girl named Juliet Stone. At her birth she became the chosen one. The one who would defeat the seeker, who wanted to destroy all of mankind, and starting with all of her friends and family unless she is strong enough to prevent it. Confused and thinking she is going crazy, Juliet works to calm the voices in her head. Now murders are beginning to happen and she knows all of the victims. To make it worse, her grandfather might be involved in the murders. Everyone is lying to her left and right and it is up to Juliet to find out who she can trust. This book was absolutely wonderful. I felt all of the emotions that Juliet felt and was so enraptured with the book. I absolutely can’t wait until I get a chance to read the next book in the series. My favorite part in the book was when Juliet finally found out the truth. It gave me a great sense of relief that she wasn’t being lied to anymore. Not only are all the pieces of the mystery starting to fall into place, but the pieces are finally beginning to make sense. The confusion that Juliet felt goes away and you want to keep reading as the book goes on. I was actually kind of disappointed when the book ended.
ReadersFavorite1 More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Stephen Fisher for Readers' Favorite Wind Catcher: A Chosen Novel by Jeff and Erynn Altabef is an urban fantasy that takes place in the US southwest. Civilization has come to a Native American reservation in the form of a casino. With it comes the merging of two worlds that produces Juliet Wildfire Stone, raised by her mother and grandfather whom she calls Shiceii. As a medicine man, he has been her spiritual guide her whole life. When Juliet is 15, her mother goes on a business trip, leaving her alone for the first time in her life. Although Shiceii will be there, she skips school for the very first time with her lifelong best friend, Troy.   The adventure begins after they leave the park near Devil’s Peak. They start to panic when they hear sirens, but when the police race by, they follow them to the house of her grandfather's old friend. A murder investigation commences when they find his body, and Shiceii is their main suspect.  Voices and images that she cannot understand flood Juliet’s head. It seems that everyone she’s known her whole life has been keeping secrets from her. She embarks on a quest to discover the truth of her heritage at all costs Jeff and Erynn Altabef tell this tale from Juliet’s point of view. Her struggles, thoughts and feelings jump off the page when her life turns into an uproar. Imagine finding out that you are the chosen one, and the fate of everything you hold dear depends on you and you alone. Wind Catcher is a suspenseful, wonderfully written story that will capture your attention and hold it prisoner. A book that you won’t want to escape from. Brava!
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite Wind Catcher: A Chosen Novel is a young adult fantasy novel written by Jeff Altabef and Erynn Altabef. Juliet Stone feels like she's being torn in two different directions. Her mother, a successful Native American lawyer, has enrolled her in an exclusive preparatory academy, Bartens. Juliet misses the friends she's always gone to school with, and the girls at Bartens haven't been very welcoming. Her mom is going on a business trip for a few days, and Juliet's irritated that her grandfather, Sicheii, will be coming to stay with her. She has always been very close to her grandfather but not so much lately. Juliet decides to play hooky for the day and calls her best friend, Troy, to see if he'll come along.  Jeff Altabef and Erynn Altabef's young adult, coming of age fantasy, Wind Catcher: A Chosen Novel, is well-written and highly entertaining. Juliet is a strong and fearless character who just wants to be a normal kid, but her destiny is something entirely different. I particularly enjoyed her interactions with her grandfather, Sicheii, who is a Native American medicine man, and Troy, her childhood friend and companion. Wind Catcher is also filled with action and adventure as Juliet and Troy try to find out the mystery behind an old photo Juliet found. This very unique and refreshingly original contemporary fantasy has elements of high epic fantasy woven throughout it, and it will surprise and delight even the most jaded fantasy readers. I'm looking forward to reading the next book in The Chosen series. Wind Catcher: A Chosen Novel is most highly recommended.